A presentation folder is a piece of card stock that is folded in half to form a 9 inches (22.86 cm) wide by 12 inches (30.48 cm) tall enclosure. The bottom or side of the card stock has an approximately 5 inch (12.7 cm) flap that is folded up on the inside of the enclosure to form pockets. This type of folder comes in many different varieties, but the main function is to hold loose material so it can be packaged together as part of a related pitch.
An office supply store will display a wide range of folders. Some are utilitarian and are often used by students for school or by office workers for common purposes. These types of folders typically use cheaper paper, are smaller, or are not designed to be a particularly attractive holder. Presentation folders are located with the regular folders but are distinguishable by quality and price.
A presentation folder is designed to be an attractive holder for the materials inside, and these folders are made of premium material. They come in glossy and matte card stock, sometimes include a spine in addition to the pockets, and almost always have cut outs to hold a business card. The folders commonly used for presentations are often priced higher than the plain folders that would be used in a classroom or office setting.
Typically, a presentation folder is used to aggregate related materials that support a particular position or pitch. Companies often use these types of folders for press and media kits. Nonprofits use them to present marketing and fundraising materials. Sales staff use presentation folders to collect marketing material on products. The folders enable the dissemination of information in an organized and sightly fashion.
An ordinary presentation folder can be stuffed with all manner of things, including sales sheets, staff profiles, brochures, testimonials, press clippings, catalogs, business cards, product samples, posters, stickers, CDs and DVDs, and other types of marketing and promotional material. A realtor might use a presentation folder to collect sales sheets on available homes, a business card, mortgage company information, a flyer with an open house schedule and listings of services, and amenities for the local area. The primary benefit of using a folder format is that the inserts can be changed at need without destroying the cover packaging.
There are a number of options for customizing a presentation folder that can be used for business purposes. Many purchase blank folders and use a printed sticker on the front with the company's logo or the name of the presentation. A more expensive option is to have the logo printed directly on the folder by a professional printer. The do-it-yourself option is to use presentation folders that have been specially designed to be printed with an inkjet or laser printer.